Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Let's Connect

These past few days the news has been filled with reminders of how some people on a certain Hill are having a tough time connecting. (Don't worry, this isn't political, just an example of some human nature.) Maybe they should all just chill about 20 minutes for a Zentangle break. I got to thinking about connections and visualizing one side putting their stuff on the table, and the other side putting their stuff on the other side of the table. Really, the process of Zentangle shows us that there is always a way it can come together, if we just step back and see, instead of hovering, hanging on to what we think is “right.”  All this observation led me to this little tile…

One of the things I love most about Zentangle is that there is something for everyone… like an art smorgasbord, where one can pick and choose elements, styles, rhythms…. It’s endless! If you tend to like a little order in your life, Zentangle provides it. If you need to get out of a box, Zentangle can help you do that. Some days we like to stay in the lines, other days we just have to bust out of them. The string in Zentangle allows both of these things at once. Here are a few tips (and also some visual steps) for satisfying both sides, and at the same time, connecting one tangle with another:

  1. Make your string with at least three sections.
  2. Fill one section of the tile in a tangle of your choice, staying within the lines of the string boundary.
  3. Fill a second section that is furthest away from the first one with a different tangle, again staying within the boundary of the string.
  4. Look at the two filled areas. Turn your tile in different directions, hold it at arm's length. (This give you a fresh perspective every time!) Find lines that have “stopped” at the string, and see if you can continue the lines, using them as “bridges” to your second tangle (see the Third tile below). The tangle, Hollibaugh is a great bridge-maker!  Or use one existing tangle as the starting point for the new tangle. You can also have elements from your first tangles that can drift across the string into your new tangle.
  5. Once you’ve made your bridges, use them as a new string and fill them with more of your favorite tangles, or fill them with the same tangles that extend from a previous section.
Tonight I will raise a little glass of something to connection and all the places we can find it.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


After sitting with this tangle's possible names for a couple weeks, the name Tuftid appeared, and when it did, it just sounded right. 
  When starting Step 2, start the fan shape in the center, working outward. You can start each line at the cross, or at the outside of the stringed section. I like to start at the edge of the string section and make my line toward the cross edge. Experiment with the rhythm of the lines and see what feels best to you. Make the lines straight or curvy! 
  It's also fun, especially if you have an intricate string, to connect the ends of one section's tufts with the ends of the tufts in the adjoining section.

   This tangle is really fun on the new black Zentangle tiles (available from your favorite CZT!). I love the feel of these tiles. I used the Sakura white Jelly Roll pen. Because of the way the ink flows, it's good to go nice and slow and deliberate. This was a good exercise for me, as I realized I am getting faster with my regular Micron. Going slow felt really nice and I need to remember to do that more often.

   Have fun!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Dancing with the moment of Process...

Many of you may have seen this already, but it bears sharing again.  The way the artist, Jim Denevan, describes his experience with his art is  the process of Zentangle feels to me. Enjoy...

You can also visit this site for more photos.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Calling All Fairies!

I've seen a ghost, but not sure I've ever seen a fairy. I think that once in a while my cats see them as they quietly fix their attention on something moving along the ceiling. There is something comforting about knowing there are, perhaps, little "sparklies" all around us, adding to our lives in ways we can't fathom. Life is a mystery and I like it that way! When you know you don't know about something, you can allow for all kinds of possibilities. There is no "End-of-Story", so the story can contain all kinds of elements yet to be discovered. (Much like the process of Zentangle®, yes?) Fairies remind me that this is always so.
   Thanks, Carol Bailey Floyd, for adding your spritely spirit to the Diva Zentangle Challenge this week. What a light-hearted way to start the week! Fairies + Zentangle = wonderful possibilities! And that is something to celebrate! (See Carol's blog about THAT!)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

stART with a string

Thank goodness for Laura Harms and her guest challengers. Things have been so busy round here, that about the only time I get to tangle lately is for the weekly challenge. This is something I wouldn't miss. It's always a fun opportunity to 1) tangle, and 2) be part of a really fun community.
   This week's Diva Challenge (Number 30!!) is brought to us by Christina Vanderlist (aka online as stART). Christina challenged us to use our initials as our string. It's a cool idea, and a fun way to start a Zentangle tile when stumped by a string idea. 
  I like that the initials don't always keep their identity, which is kind of ironically cool. It's fun to see the letters dissolve into the tangles. Seeing the letter as a shape rather than a part of a word, it's not surprising that it seems to disappear. I noticed that when I concentrated on the letter as an initial of my name, there was a whole different feeling when doing it, and a whole different outcome. I like the ones where the letters get lost the best. I also didn't realize until I scanned them to post, that I didn't sign them. I guess I felt like I already had put my 'chop' on it in the string. The first two started as block initials, and the third was a cursive rendition.
   Thanks, Christina, for a really fun challenge. And a special thanks to Shelly Beauch, whose Tripoli tangleation really inspired tile #2. And of course, thanks to miss Diva, who started all this hoorrraah. 

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Z Shoes

A while back on Facebook, there were a few posts about tangled shoes. It's an irresistible project, so when I found these shoes at Meijer, I had to try it. (Here is an online source for the same shoe, although the ones at Meijer we much less expensive). They are made for people who stand on their feet a lot, so they are really comfortable and kind of cute when they're all tangled up! 
    I see online that there is tan and black. That might look really cool, too. The shoes are a manmade, molded material. I tried the Micron and it took forever to dry, so I sprayed it with some Klear Kote, and that did the trick. Once I realized that little snafu, I did the rest in enamel markers. I'm still trying to figure out how to do the strap, as it bends and cracks the marker. Maybe a shoe dye. Will have to work on that.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Week 29: String Theory IV

This week's Diva challenge is brought to us by guest tangler and CZT, Sue Jacobs. Sue presented a genius idea for creating a string. Read about it here.
   I love this idea and will no doubt keep have my handy dandy string-maker nearby for those days when I need a jump start string-wise. The string is often the first 'hang-up' if I'm not feeling very "let-it-go-ish". 
   I used a very thin beading thread, that had some curl to it, so most of my string lines were very roundish. I'm going to try something flimsier next try to see what happens.
   As I am often tangling at my computer desk, I had been looking up seed pod images on the internet. I came across a desert rose seed pod photo that immediately sparked a tangle, so that is the first tile. I don't know what to call it, so anyone with any ideas, please feel free to make a suggestion.

Thanks, Diva, Sue, and the lovely desert rose.